Tesla FSD drives 'into tree', injures driver

Occurred: May 2023

A Tesla reportedly in 'self-driving mode' drove into a tree near Big Rapids, Michigan, injuring the driver, who was despatched to hospital. The driver told police that the car pulled to the right and went off the road, struck a tree and rolled several times after she had switched it to self-drive. 

The incident called into question the safety and reliability of Tesla's Autopilot driver assistance system. Equally, as media reports mentioned, there is no such thing as 'self-driving mode' on Tesla cars, though the company offers Full Self-Driving (FSD), which automatically performs many driving tasks, but which also requires driver monitoring.

Tesla drivers have regularly blamed accidents on Tesla's Autopilot driver assistance system, sometimes apparently to avoid blame. On the other hand, Tesla has been dogged by accusations that it systematically over-states the capabilities of its Autopilot and Full-Self Driving (FSD) systems, and under-stated their role in accidents.

Developer: Tesla
Country: USA
Sector: Automotive
Purpose: Automate steering, acceleration, braking
Technology: Self-driving system
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Safety
Transparency: Black box